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Recipe Chopped Chicken or Beef Liver

  • j

I am a big fan of Chopped Liver but have never made it. I am not even sure if Beef or Chicken Lever is a better choice. Please let me know if you have a good recipe. The Chopped Liver of my childhood also had chopped hard boiled egg in it. Any ideas?
Thanks

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  1. That sounds like chicken liver. I never heard of chopped beef liver.

    Basically just broil or saute a pound of chicken livers for a five minutes or so until the insides are just barely pink. You want them to not be overcooked and dry, but the juices are clear. Then pulse with hard boiled egg in the food processor into a rough pate. You can add some raw sweet onion and cognac as well. Taste it and adjust with salt and pepper. A teaspoon or so of salt per pound of liver.

    Chicken liver is real cheap. Around $1-2 a pound so you can experiment.I never make it the same way twice. If you do a google search for chopped chicken liver you will get a ton of recipes.

    5 Replies
    1. re: The Rogue

      That's because you never met my late mother, the daughter of Russian/East European immigrants. Her chopped liver was made by sauteing calves liver (steer liver, actually - if I remember correctly) and onions in Nyafat (chicken fat substitute), chopping them fairly coarsely (she used a mezzaluna-like blade and an old wooden bowl), adding chopped hard-boiled egg and some real rendered chicken fat (gribenes for the kids) with salt and pepper to taste.

      Trust me, nobody's liver tasted quite as good, and we still miss it.

      1. re: Striver

        Nor my late mother-in-law's chopped liver.

        She would "fry-out" (Wisconsinese for grilling on the barbeque)kosher beef livers over real charcoal (briquettes were not allowed)and then chop with onions and the schmaltz they had been fried in, and hard boiled eggs. She stayed up all night making about 25 lbs. worth for her eldest daughter's wedding in the early 70's.
        Wonderful.

        1. re: Striver

          Butchers nowadays are stumped when I say my grandma used steer liver. So I just get beef liver. Of course everyone's own bubbie's chopped liver is the best, but in general I like the texture better with beef liver.

          Grandma Sally's chopped liver:

          2 lbs. beef liver
          3 big white onions
          1/4 cup oil
          6-7 hard boiled eggs
          salt and pepper

          broil the liver until done. Fry the onions in the oil (nobody sauteed in Sally's day, they just fried) until they're brown and soft and shrunken. Put the whole shebang through the medium holes of a meat grinder (a must, for the proper texture. I still have her Universal Food Chopper--it's good for cranberry relish also).

          1. re: heidipie

            Oh yeah, definitely beef liver. The chopped liver made by Mrs. Schoenbrun for Brucie Kaiser's bar mitzvah is still the best I've ever tasted. Though an anorexic teenybopper at the time, I couldn't stop piling it on at the buffet table. My brother still remembers this chopped liver as fondly as I do.

            1. re: Melanie Wong

              The texture with beef liver stays looser (esp. with plenty of onions/eggs/oil). Chopped chicken liver inevitably gets packed down and ends up pate-like.

      2. I remember the best chopped liver as being chicken liver based but with some beef/calves liver added which seemed to give body to the pate. Also chicken fat, onions, hard cooked eggs. Never made it but a long gone friend made the best and I still remember the flavor and she always used a liver combo.

        1. If you want Jewish style chopped liver it must be all chicken. If you want another type of liver pate, that's another story. The recipe below looks like what my grandmother made and served on Saltines when we came for dinner on Sundays. It's made with shmaltz (rendered chicken fat). If the shmaltz scares you you can cook the onion in vegetable oil.

          Enjoy!

          Link: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...

          1 Reply
          1. re: doctor_mama

            I believe that many of the above posters were describing "Jewish style" chopped liver when they gave recipes that included beef liver. My Jewish grandmother and mother both used beef liver. They broiled the liver and then chopped it in a wooden bowl with onions that had been sauteed slowly in schmaltz and hard-boiled eggs. They used a "hockmesser" (also known as a mezzaluna) that I still own and love.

          2. Most of the listed recipes are OK...one hint. Parboil your livers for 5 minutes before sauteeing with the onions and schmaltz. Seems to get rid of strong liver flavor.

            1 Reply
            1. re: JIm H.

              Why would you want to get rid of it? ha ha

            2. Thankyou for all if the ideas and recipes. I used a combination of beef and chicken liver, lots of onions caramelized slowly and deglazed in chicken stock, salt, pepper, and eggs hard boiled. No oil at all. I did add all of the considerable pan juices as suggested by a couple of people. I ground it in the food processor and added the chopped egg after the processing. People were piling it on the Matzo an inch high and the hostess refused to give me any left over liver (it wasn't much anyway). You guys are great, I couldn't have done it without you. The combinations of livers gives it the graininess but also a creaminess. That seemed to be a big factor in the success. Caramelized onion also helped. Nobody missed the extra oil that the recipes called for. Maybe because of the added, reduced chicken stock. If I make it again, I might processs the liver separate from the onion and also let the liver cool before processing but I am not sure. It was pretty good.

              1. You just never know.........

                Twenty years ago, I worked for the top Kosher Caterer in my area...and I always sampled the chopped liver whenever I had a craving........I had been working there for nearly a year before I saw one of the cooks responsible for making the chopped liver, making it one particular day..........he was putting large amounts of cooked beef liver into a 60-80 quart Hobart Mixer....the kind you see in bakeries and pizzerias........I asked him what he was doing and he told me he was making chopped liver for the parties.......I said I thought chopped liver was supposed to be made from chicken livers........he laughed at me.

                1. The family recipe I have is L-O-E, 1 - 2 - 3: 1 pound of liver, 2 onions, and 3 eggs. Hard boil the eggs. Saute the onions until carmelized. Saute the liver in schmaltz or olive oil, until just pink in the center. Put the liver and onions in the food processor, and pulse until coarse. Salt and pepper liberally. Dice the eggs 1/4", and mix 2 into the liver. Garnish with the remaining egg. Serve with fresh rye bread from a Jewish deli. Yum!!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: vickib

                    Hmm. Almost exactly the same as mine - I just leave oout one egg and use a small raw onion for the crunch factor. Most people insist on adding more schmaltz, but I find if you don't overcook the livers, it's just perfect.

                  2. My mother, a Holocaust survivor, made chopped liver with 1 lb. chicken livers and 1 lb. beef livers combined. She always used a Spanish Onion, which is not as sharp as a regular yellow onion. The Kashering preparation goes like this: Broil the livers first. Only the beef livers have to be cut up into smaller pieces, or slashed if left whole, so the blood will drip out. Broil with the slashed side down. Then lightly salt with kosher salt both sides of livers. Then broil the livers for about 3 minutes on each side. If this is not done it is not being Kashered properly. Then saute, with chicken fat or canola oil, the livers for one minute more with the golden brown sliced onions that sauteed for about 10-20 minutes.
                    Then refrigerate all the ingredients for one half hour. My Mama used a food grinder to put the livers, onions, and 2 extra large hard boiled eggs to grind with added fat. Don't forget to add to grinder (or processor) about 1 to 1-1/2 tsp. salt and 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. black pepper to your taste.